Thursday, September 17, 2009

Honeycrisp Apples

Wow. After three years of enjoying these beauties in the fall, all I can still say (as I munch on one now) is "wow." Not "wow!" That was the first year. The "wow" of the honeycrisp apple for me has mellowed into an enduring wow of subtle and deep appreciation and ever-renewing amazement.
honeycrisp applesThis apple, in my opinion, is the apple that redefined all apples for me. I had my preferences before my first honeycrisp: this apple is good, that one isn't so good, that other one is okay or good enough or some such. All apples now are inferior compared with these beautiful specimens. They have the perfect balance between sweetness and tartness along with a full, pleasant apple flavor that leads me to believe that if I actually believed the story about the Garden of Eden, I'm pretty sure I know which apple that snake was peddling and why Eve, who otherwise had it all, fell to the temptation -- and would do it again knowing the full ramifications of her actions (if it was a story to be taken literally, I say again!). I mean, seriously. They're that good. Almost all other apples for me now are either "pie apples" or "juicing apples," the latter category including inferior pears and crab apples in addition to the usual mealy kinds that I don't like but can often get for a low, low price and run through my juicer just the same.

I belly up for these apples. They can be pricy. The four above were what was left of the six that I bought for a little under $14.50 the other day, but on the other hand, they're huge. On the first hand, they're still over $3 a pound, which is about $2 a pound more than I'm usually happy to let go of for apples. These are worth it, though.

Here's my story on Honeycrisps because it's just worth sharing. A few years ago, I went to New England in the early Autumn for some training, and with me went hope well-founded for some near-perfect New England apples. The first one I grabbed, hoping for a Cortland, was a honeycrisp, a varietal I'd never heard of and felt willing to try since they came from a local orchard somewhere in rural Massachussetts. I took my first bite of it as soon as I got out of the store and after my traveling buddy bit into his lifetime-first Cortland (we don't get good apples in the South, or so we used to say because it was true). He almost fell over from it, but it was nothing in comparison to my nearly ridiculous reaction to my first honeycrisp. "WOW!" is a big understatement. On threat of pain or death, I made him go back into the store and buy a honeycrisp, which ellicited a similar reaction from him. I was sold. Appledom had been redefined in just one bite.

They never got old. I ate dozens, figuring that'd be all I could get until next time I came to New England. I sucked down the cider of the precious fruit, ate two or three before meals and others as snacks, and loved every bite of them. I was just sad that I couldn't bring some home with me, having no room in my luggage to carry them. Then I came home, and lo! Honeycrisps were in the store just weeks after I told my family about this unbelievable, almost mythically good apple. Their reactions matched mine.

Folks, I tell you. This is the best apple ever. Ever. Ever ever ever ever ever. You should drop whatever you're doing right now and go buy a dozen of them, especially if they're huge.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

No comments: